How to save drive storage

We all know that the megapixel war is still on and such camera like Nikon's D8xx line of cameras (D800, D800e and D810) are up in the medium format league in terms of file size, having 75Mb+ file sizes quickly chews up archiving storage. Well in this article, I will teach you how to save drive storage, using the Nikon D8xx as an example. 36MP vs 15MP Huge space saver!

Sure some jobs require all the super 36MP or more image sizes, but for jobs like my real estate work you don't need it. So it does annoy the heck out of me that people bag about the file size.

There is no secret or wizardry, but I'm surprised why not many people know about this. Here's my solution (credit given to Scott Hargis for teaching me this):

Convert you files to DNG! The awesome thing is that you don't lose and properties of what your proprietary RAWs have.

You can download a free copy of Adobes DNG converter here (Mac | Windows) and if you have Lightroom, you can ingest and convert on the fly.

Adobe DNG converter

For real estate or and other jobs that does not require the mammoth image sizes, I convert it to 15MP and once confirmed (or double checked) that the files are all converted, I delete the proprietary RAW files and archive the DNGs instead.

Daunting at first, but seriously, do you want to spend unnecessary cash on storage?

Here's a list of benefits:

  • smaller file size
  • faster rendering speeds
  • less processing stress on your computer
  • future proof file format
  • easy on storage
  • cheaper in the long run
  • same properties as proprietary RAW

Here are the disadvantages:

  • Your client may need a 36MP for massive billboards
  • extra step in your workflow
  • few extra minutes of your life spent on waiting

I would take the benefits anyway! What do you think?

Will this fit into your workflow?